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Peterson Defense Team Wants One Judge To Oversee Entire Trial

Posted May 24, 2002

— Mike Peterson's defense team will be in court today for a hearing to determine whether one judge will oversee the entire trial.

Lawyers for Peterson filed the motion Tuesday, stating that they would like one judge to oversee the entire trial.

The defense wants the case to be considered "exceptional," meaning one judge would oversee everything.

"This way, we'll have a judge. We'll hopefully set some deadlines for motions, hearings and a trial. Just to get a case like this moving, I think it's helpful," said attorney David Rudolf, who represents Peterson.

District Attorney Jim Hardin said he does not object to that request, but he defends himself against defense complaints that he has dragged his feet on sharing evidence. Hardin said he simply wants to make sure no mistakes are made.

"We get to the bottom of this. We find the truth and Kathleen Peterson receives the justice she deserves," he said.

Peterson was charged by a grand jury with killing his wife, Kathleen, at their Durham home on December 9. Peterson said he is innocent, but the prosecutor said there is no doubt Peterson killed his wife.

Also on Tuesday, Hardin handed over more than 3,000 pages of reports detailing evidence found at the Peterson mansion the night Kathleen was found dead at the bottom of the stairs.

Hardin also filed a motion looking for evidence collected by Peterson's team of experts.

"I've not received any reciprocal discovery even though we've made two separate requests," he said.

Rudolf says he was pleased that the materials, called discovery in legal circles, had been provided. He says the defense needs more and that the materials provided included bank records.

A trial may not occur until next year.

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